Wednesday, January 27, 2016

Asian House Martin

I visited Suan Rot Faid again this morning to see if there were any more refugees from the cold weather. On arrival I checked the hirundines in the area where yesterday's Sand Martin had been and was very happy to see a small hirundine with a big white bum - Asian House Martin, another new patch bird!

The Asian House Martin was feeding low over freshly cut grass with at least two Red-rumped Swallows and several Barn Swallows (no sign of the sand Martin, sadly).  I spent a considerable amount of time trying to get photos of the Asian House Martin - not an easy task at all, so only ended up with a couple of record shots:

Asian House Martin

After a while I moved on to see what else I could find, and eventaully came across another hirundine flock which consisted of at least THREE more Asian House Martins and two Red-rumped Swallows! These Asian House Martins gave better photographic opportunities, enabling me to get the dark underwing for comparison with Norther House Martin.

Asian House Martin, showing dark underwing (cf. Northern HM)

I am a bit unclear what the status of Asian House Martin is in the Bangkok area, though it seems to be entirely absent from Round (2008), which suggests that it may have only been added to the local avifauna in recent years (I have seen them at Kaho Dinsor during raptor migration last October, but have rarely encuntered them elsewhere in Asia, so this is a welcome and unexpected addition to the patch list).

Another notable record on the patch today, given the date was two Chinese Pond Herons in well-advanced breeding plumage (see picture below).

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